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Thanks to your generosity, Christmas Fund reaches $1.13 million

With a donation of $100,000, David Bird has pushed the Times Colonist Christmas Fund to new heights. By Saturday evening your fund was at $1,138,957.81, and the money continues to come in.
Christmas Fund
Christmas Fund

Dave ObeeWith a donation of $100,000, David Bird has pushed the Times Colonist Christmas Fund to new heights. By Saturday evening your fund was at $1,138,957.81, and the money continues to come in.

What prompted Bird’s generosity?

“The poisonous discourse and acrimony south of the border, the four-year madness of Brexit, among other things, coupled with the necessary social distancing imposed by COVID are all hugely divisive,” he said.

“I think the Times Colonist is an important forum for giving voice to various interests in this small community and through the Christmas Fund and the Literary Society Fund is playing a positive role in helping to lift the community up, however briefly, and to bring it together, which I believe deserves support.”

Bird also said that he would like to “use this donation to acknowledge and recognize the several lovely and talented women who have helped to enrich my life here in Victoria.” So this one’s dedicated to you, Barb, Carmen, Diane, Frances, Gail, Kathy, Marion, Patricia and Sue.

In size, Bird’s donation is second only to the $125,000 given by the Jawl family.

Almost 3,700 people have donated to the fund, and there have been many different reasons for doing so. The common thread is an interest in helping others through the roughest time we can remember.

Since 1956, the fund has helped make the holiday season a bit brighter for those in need. The amount of money donated this year — more than three times last year’s total — brings greater responsibility to those of us who administer the fund.

We need to find ways to provide lasting impact. It’s nice to see people get hot meals at Christmas, but January and February promise to be cold and miserable as the impact of COVID-19 continues to disrupt many lives.

As we continue to raise money, we will be looking for the best ways to use that money to promote fundamental change, as well as hope, in our community beyond the Christmas season.

Why donate now? Several people have told us they are handing over their B.C. Recovery Benefit money. Others say they are completing their charitable donations to beat the Dec. 31 deadline. And of course, this is the season of giving.

No matter what the reason, all of these donations matter, and will make a difference.

We have already helped the Mustard Seed Street Church, the Salvation Army in Victoria, the Goldstream Food Bank, the Sooke Food Bank, the Saanich Peninsula Food Bank, the Victoria Women’s Transition House, and the Vancouver Island Counselling Centre for Immigrants and Refugees.

Recipients north of the Malahat include Nourish Cowichan in Duncan, the Cobble Hill-Mill Bay-Shawnigan Lake Food Bank, the Lake Cowichan Food Bank, the Loaves and Fishes Food Bank in Nanaimo, the Salvation Army in Port Alberni, Parksville and Campbell River, the food banks in the Comox Valley and Campbell River, and Food Bank on the Edge in Ucluelet.

The food banks on Salt Spring Island, Mayne Island, Gabriola Island, Denman Island and Hornby Island have also received money from this fund.

We will do all that we can to help others in the months to come. And we thank you, sincerely, for your generosity, which is making this possible.

[email protected]


Donate online at ­ That will take you to the Canada Helps ­website, which is open 24 hours a day and provides an immediate tax receipt.

Or mail a cheque, payable to the Times Colonist ­Christmas Fund Society, to the Times ­Colonist Christmas Fund, 201-655 Tyee Road, Victoria V9A 6X5.

Or use your credit card by phoning 250-995-4438 between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m., Monday through Friday. Outside those hours, messages will be accepted.

Donate refundable cans and bottles at ­Bottle Depot and GFL Environmental.